October 27, 2012

Buttons, Buttons, and Cats

Well, here is an actual, completed project using some of the myriad of buttons I have been acquiring.  Yea!

This little piece has a story.  Of course.  My friend Gloria gave me her mom's button box.  Her mom was a super accomplished seamstress, with tons of various skills and talents.  I decided right away that I needed to make some sort of memorial piece for Gloria, to celebrate her mom and her love of sewing.

October 21, 2012

Something From Nothing

Several years ago, I was contacted by an interior decorator who was clearing out her studio.  She wondered if I'd like her old fabric samples.  "Sure!" I said, never one to turn down a gift of cool fabric.  I drove over to her place, and discovered that she had enough to fill my trunk.  Wow.  
I brought it all home, sorted it out, gave what I didn't think I'd ever use to a grade school art room, and piled the rest into a big plastic storage bin.  

And there it sat for a few more years, until my kids grew up and there began to be more time for art.  What with parenting and repairing quilts, I hadn't done much play for the sake of play for quite a while.

October 17, 2012

And While We're Visiting the 1950s....

Yesterday, with the poodle skirt blog in process and my mind in the 1950s, I found myself using my vintage Sunbeam Mixmaster while making dinner.  It was a wedding gift to my parents who got married in 1949.  

It's still going strong.  A couple of years ago, I sent it to the vintage mixer "spa" for an overhaul.  I've got no affiliation or anything, but if you have a vintage mixer, you will really enjoy this site.  I love my oldie-but-goodie mixer, and was delighted to find someone who could give it lots of TLC and keep it humming along.  I feel like Phil's mixer business is much like my quilt business, caring for cherished items that often hold lots of history and memories, and are generally just very cool.

I have so many memories of being small enough to sit on the counter next to this mixer and help my mom make cookies and cakes by adding bits of the ingredients as the blades whirled and the bowl spun slowly around.  I found it fascinating to watch each new ingredient spiral into the mix and eventually blend in.  Not to mention the fun of eating the delicious end products.  Ahhhh.....

October 16, 2012

Poodle Skirt!

Here's a really-truly poodle skirt, the iconic fashion item of the 1950s.  I did some repair work on it for the Basya Berkman Etsy shop.

It's a traditional felt circle skirt with appliquéd poodle.  Super simple construction - a big circle of felt plus waistband and side zipper - no hem needed since the felt doesn't ravel a bit.  No wonder they were such a popular style!  The thread attaching the waistband was wearing out, so my job was to restitch that and now it's ready to rock'n'roll again.

October 14, 2012


This weekend, my sewing time was devoted to starting to sort and unearth things in the super, over-the-top, clutter in my sewing room.  

For a long time, I've been looking for a replacement for the little plastic drawers that are home to notions, tools, floss, and embellishments.  They are so full that, as you can see, they are no longer functional at all.  I scored this lovely little drawer unit at an estate sale.

(Of course, part of the reason those drawers are so full is that I keep picking up odds and ends and extra needles and snaps and a really cool old wooden darning egg, etc., etc., etc., at those great estate sales.....)

October 4, 2012

The Race to the Top

Last night, my refrigerator quilt post overtook the beaded wedding dress in number of visitors.  It now sits in the place of honor to your right as one of the top six most popular posts on my blog.

I'm really enjoying watching the statistics of page views and readership.  I'm closing in on 7000 views since my blog was born, not a huge number in the world of the internet, but it sounds really big to me.  And the count of countries represented is currently a whopping 51.  That's the stat that makes me the happiest!  I feel like I'm sitting here watching the planet shrink.

And now, I'll go back to work, so I can have more wonderful things to post about.  Today I'm working on a batch of vintage clothing repairs, and a customer just delivered a wonderful early 1800s era quilt for repair work.  I will have much to say about that one.

Canadian Couture

Here's a skirt I've repaired for Basya Berkman Vintage Fashions.  My friend Julia, who researches the clothing she sells there, told me to check out the interesting story behind this piece.